Child Custody and Visitation Issues

What is the Difference Between Legal Custody and Physical Custody?

In New York there is a difference between legal custody and physical custody.

Legal custody refers to the whether a parent has decision making power for major decision regarding the child or children’s lives such as:

  • Educational Decisions
  • Religious Upbringing Decisions
  • Medical Decisions

Physical custody refers to who the child or children will reside with.

Parents can retain joint legal custody, as well as joint physical custody.


One parent can also retain sole legal custody, as well as sole physical custody.

If you would like to schedule a free consultation with a New York child custody lawyer, please call (866) 830-2064.

What are Options for Visitation?

When it comes to visitation, many parents opt for the non-custodial parent (i.e.,  the parent who does not have primary physical custody) to have “reasonable” visitation.

Reasonable visitation means that the custodial parent and the non-custodial parent will work out visitation issues in the future in a reasonable manner.

Reasonable visitation is used when parents are going to maintain a somewhat friendly relationship and want the child to be able to visit the non-custodial parent on a reasonable basis.

A potential issue with reasonable visitation is that it leaves the visitation schedule to be decided and is not as easily enforceable by Family Court as a set visitation schedule.

A set visitation schedule, on the other hand, is exactly what it sounds like.  It is a schedule that you and your soon-to-be ex-spouse agree upon.

You can agree upon certain times and days that the non-custodial parent will have visitation time with the child or children.

You can also specify what holidays the child or children will spend with whom.

If you would like to schedule a free consultation with a New York child visitation lawyer, please call (866) 830-2064.